Symposium on “Ringing Ears: The Neuroscience of Tinnitus”


In 2010 the Society for Neuroscience accepted a proposal from our lab for a symposium on “Ringing Ears: The neuroscience of tinnitus”, which was presented at its annual meeting on November 14th in San Diego.  The speakers were Larry Roberts (McMaster), Jos Eggermont (University of Calgary), Donald Caspary (Southern Illinois University Medical School), Susan Shore (University of Michigan), Jennifer Melcher (Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary, Harvard Medical School), and James Kaltenbach (Department of Neurosciences, The Cleveland Clinic).  

A preview of the symposium was published in the November 12th issue of Journal of Neuroscience, where we discuss how tinnitus is generated by the brain when auditory neurons are deafferented by hearing impairments.  Recent evidence cited in our paper indicates that hearing loss is becoming increasingly common among children and adolescents, affecting over 19% of this youthful population in 2005.  Because hearing loss at an early age sets the stage for the development of tinnitus later in life, it is important to protect our ears from loud recreational and other environmental sounds. 

To obtain a reprint of our paper, click the citation below.  An exemplary program created by William Martin of the Oregon Health Science University and aimed at preventing hearing loss in children can be found at

Roberts LE, Eggermont JJ, Caspary DC, Shore SE, Melcher JR, Kaltenbach JA (2010) Ringing ears: The neuroscience of tinnitus. Journal of Neuroscience, 30:14980-14986.